Julia M. Santucci, who just stepped down as Senior Advisor to the U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues at the U.S. Department of State, will be joining the GSPIA faculty in the fall of 2017 as a Senior Lecturer in Intelligence Studies. She will also serve as Director of the new Hesselbein Forum Leadership Program in International Security.
Santucci earned a BA in History summa cum laude at the University of Dayton in 2001 and an MA in Near Eastern Studies at the University of Arizona in 2004. She also studied Arabic at both Middlebury College (summer 2003 – Modern Standard Arabic) and at the American University in Cairo, Egypt (2004 – Egyptian Dialect).
From 2005 to 2015 Santucci worked as an Analyst for the Central Intelligence Agency. She communicated analysis of political developments, emerging threats, and crises through written assessments and oral briefings for the President, his Cabinet, Members of Congress, congressional staff, and other senior U.S. officials to inform their decision making around top priorities. Her areas of expertise included: countering violent extremism, political Islam, political upheaval during and after the Arab Spring, human rights and the rights of women and religious minorities in the Middle East, and regional developments related to the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
From May to July 2009 she was seconded to the U.S. Department of State in Washington where she served as Egypt Desk Officer. In this capacity she developed and coordinated Egypt policy,
prepared the Secretary of State and other senior State Department officials for meetings with foreign leaders, civil society activists, Members of Congress, and business leaders by drafting written assessments and providing oral presentations on developments in Egypt and recommending talking points for use during their meetings. She also met with Egyptian officials and non-governmental leaders from faith-based groups, academia, civil society activists, and private industry to convey U.S. policy towards Egypt.
From April 2012 to May 2014 Santucci was seconded to the National Security Council Staff at the White House where she served as Director for Egypt. In this position she provided strategic advice and policy recommendations to the President and the National Security Advisor during the most tumultuous period of Egypt’s modern history. She recommended policy options that allowed senior officials to balance U.S. military and security cooperation with Egypt with concerns over the country’s long-term stability. She initiated and led an in depth review of U.S. assistance to Egypt, which involved significant coordination across the interagency and required the resolution of major conflicts. This review resulted in a new foreign assistance strategy for Egypt, which realigned military assistance to meet shared objectives, particularly countering terrorism and border security. She also represented the White House in meetings with senior Egyptian military and civilian leaders, representatives from the business community in Egypt, and civil society activists. She received a letter of commendation from President Obama noting that she "worked in one of our Nation's most demanding environments with impressive skill."
In April 2015 Santucci moved to the U.S. State Department to assume her position as Senior Advisor to the U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues. In this capacity she worked to advance gender equality as a core U.S. foreign policy priority by providing advice and recommendations to the Secretary of State, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, and other senior officials. She developed a strong network with key stakeholders representing foreign governments, multilateral institutions, and civil society organizations. She managed a team of 5 policy advisors working across global portfolios, overseeing the development and implementation of strategic plans for advancing women’s full participation and combating gender-based violence in South Asia and the Middle East; integrating women into U.S. efforts to counter violent extremism; advancing initiatives on women’s economic empowerment in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC); supporting women entrepreneurs globally; and harnessing the influence of religious leaders and faith-based actors to promote girls’ education and combat violence against women and girls.